COMMUNICATION: Anything from textspeak to journalese and estate-agent jargon. 

THERE are now so many different forms of communication. Anything ranging from textspeak (imagine Jaws from the movie texting a fellow great white shark: “Hi, gr8 white here – strvng. Cn we mt 4 lunch? C U l8er”), email, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram to journalese and estate-agent jargon.
In the world of journalese, tabloids could never be accused of being long-winded, could they? Remember that infamous New York Post headline: ‘Headless Body in Topless Bar’?
Politicians, too, are always described as ‘making a difference…in these tough times’. They don’t simply get on with the job in a timely way like the rest of us but ‘in an 11th-hour decision following marathon talks, hammer out an agreement on blah, blah, blah…’
And after a month of the in-depth sofa-based research otherwise known as Dry January, I can confirm that the present UK government needs to do more than just deliver catchy slogans. Promises like ‘build back better’, ‘levelling up’ and taking ‘big, bold decisions’ to ensure every part of Britain emerges stronger from the pandemic need to be implemented if only to get over the ‘Partygate’ scandal.
And finally estate agent jargon, a language you never learned at school. Take this: ‘1920s suburban house for sale, best seen late at night in mid-winter, with the lights dimmed. For lovers of heritage, the kitchen and bathroom will delight, no improvements having been made for 30 years.
Main lounge has three and a bit outside walls and can usefully double up as a fridge in winter. Utility room is a renowned structure, as it is still standing. The property boasts a reasonably-sized garden, although there is no warranty as to its exact size, as all the fences have blown down. The charming garage also has its uses. Price on application to We will append the appropriate number of zeros when we reply to you.’
Ah, jargon – in a world of its own? I guess it’s like Louis Armstrong once said, “If you have to ask what jazz is, you’ll never know.”
Nora Johnson’s psychological crime thrillers ‘The Sentinel’, ‘No Safe Place’, ‘Betrayal’, ‘The Girl in the Woods’, ‘The Girl in the Red Dress’, ‘No Way Back’, ‘Landscape of Lies’, ‘Retribution’, ‘Soul Stealer’, ‘The De Clerambault Code’ ( available online as eBook (€0.99; £0.99), Apple Books, paperback and audiobook. All profits to Costa del Sol Cudeca cancer charity.  
Nora Johnson’s opinions are her own and are not necessarily representative of those of the publishers, advertisers or sponsors.

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Nora Johnson

Novelist Nora Johnson offers insights on everything from current affairs to life in Spain, with humour and a keen eye for detail.